ADHD and Damaging Myths

ADHD is a very real neurological disorder. You might assume that the child “bouncing off the walls” in the grocery aisle is doing so because his parents haven’t trained him properly. But before you jump to conclusions, consider that there could be a very real neurological disorder responsible for that behavior…ADHD. 

The National Institute of Mental Health estimates that 3% to 5% of children have ADHD, while other experts believe it could be more. You can read more about ADHD on their website.

I often talk about ADHD in adults and about the differences between ADHD and ASD in my blog articles. It’s important to know that ADHD does not affect all people the same way. I’ve talked about a few of the triggers for meltdowns in my blog, Too Loud, Too Bright, Too Itchy: Reasons for ADHD or ASD Meltdowns.

Time and time again I see damaging myths about ADHD in the media or from people around me. Recently I read an article about ADHD myths from ADDitude Magazine and it’s a topic worth discussing. 


Myth: You should outgrow ADHD.

You don’t outgrow ADHD.  That is why ADHD (also known as ADD) is being diagnosed in adults in their 20’s, 30’s, and even in grandparents in their 60’s. Many ADHD adults say that they weren’t aware of the disorder until they had a child who was diagnosed. After seeing ADHD in their children, these adults gradually realized that they had the same signs and symptoms.


Myth: ADHD is the same for everyone.

ADHD does not affect all people the same way. Some with ADHD have learning disorders, while others do not. Some ADHD people are intellectually gifted, others have average or below average IQ. Some come from supportive homes, others come from dysfunctional families. These factors affect the impact of ADHD on the life of the individual.


Myth: ADHD isn’t a real medical disorder.

I talked about this at the beginning of this article. The child “bouncing off the walls” you saw in a supermarket might have ADHD. It is not the result of bad parenting.

The National Institutes of Health, the U.S. Department of Education and the American Psychiatric Association recognize ADHD as a medical disorder, which is biologically based – a result of an imbalance of chemical messengers, or neurotransmitters, within the brain.


Myth: People with ADHD are lazy or stupid

If treated, people with ADHD can lead rich, productive lives. Many famous individuals have accomplished a great deal, despite having ADHD. For example, there are several reports that Simone Biles the Olympic gymnast, singer Justin Timberlake, swimmer Michael Phelps and Glenn Beck the political radio talk show host are a few of the famous people who have prospered while dealing with ADHD.


Do you suspect a family member of having ADHD? The cycle of frustration and failure can be broken with proper treatment. Please, seek help immediately. I offer online therapy, so we can work around your busy schedule.

Knowledge is power. Learn all you can about ADHD, even if you don’t personally know someone with it. The more you understand, the more supportive you can be. Families with ADHD need our help.

Learn more on my website: ADHD/ADD.

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